Thailand Cave Rescue

What a month it has been in Thailand. The Thailand cave rescue has been in most people’s thoughts. As news spread of the missing boys from the football team called the Wild Boars from a village near Chiang Rai, the world held it’s breath. Then came the news that they had been found alive in the Tham Luang caves and initially everyone breathed a sigh of relief. However the truth slowly began to dawn on people as to their plight. This would take a rescue operation of incredible bravery, complexity and expertise. The Thailand cave rescue had begun.

Thailand cave rescue
First images of the boys began to spread around the World.

Initial joy was soon tempered in the worst possible way when news came out that one of the amazing volunteers had lost his life trying to take oxygen through the flooded caves. Saman Kunan, a former Thai navy Seal, avid cyclist, fitness fanatic and superb human being had passed out and was unable to be revived. The world should never forget this brave man and the sacrifice he made. These guys are fully aware of the risks in these extremely difficult situations. The Thailand cave rescue offered the very hardest of these difficulties. 

Thailand cave rescue team member Saman Kunan
A true hero: Saman Kunan

Decisions Had to be Made Swiftly

Speculation was rife that the boys may have to be left in the caves for an incredible four months waiting for the dry season. However as Oxygen levels failed in the caves and carbon diOxide levels rose, it became apparent that time was of an essence. The decision was made to train the boys to dive and bring them out. Some of these kids are just 12 years old and cannot even swim. Experts around the world talked of the almost superhuman task they were facing.

About 90 expert divers and many more volunteers worked continually to get the boys out and the world once again began celebrating when the first four lads arrived out of the cave on Sunday. They were followed by four more on Monday. As the rains returned the operation to get the last four boys and their coach out, started on Tuesday morning. In addition to the five, there were three navy seals and a doctor who had been staying with the boys. 

News also came out that the coach had been orphaned years ago by a disease that swept through his village killing his parents and his young brother. He went into a monastery but was to return to his village to look after his raging grandmother. It is worth remembering that he himself is only 25 years old. If ever any young guys deserved a break it was this one. The parents of the boys had earlier issued statements saying that they in no way blamed him for going into the caves. Sometimes Thai people can be humbling. 

At Last the Best of News

Finally on the evening of Tuesday 10th July came the wonderful news that the final four boys, their coach, and the three divers and one medic who had stayed with them had been brought to safety. The Thailand cave rescue operation was over. This had been achieved without any further casualties. It really was the best news brought about by an incredible and expert group of people working together. If ever there was a metaphor for what the world could achieve if only we all worked together this was it. 

The 3 Navy seals and the medic who had stayed with the boys

It has been an incredible tale of bravery that has gripped the world’s press for two weeks. At last we have something good to celebrate, but let us not ever forget the price paid by former Thai Navy Seal Saman Kunan. The world honours your memory, sir.

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Following a highly successful 25-year career as a singer/songwriter and musician, Keith pulled out of the rat race and moved to Southeast Asia in 2008. First living in Thailand, he moved to Cambodia and then relocated to Ho Chi Minh City in early 2013. Keith has had work published in magazines and websites in the UK, Europe, USA, Australia and Asia. He has written for the BBC and has appeared on TV and radio in many different countries. His great loves are music and travel, but he writes on a whole range of subjects.